Author: Breeana Shields
Pub. Date: January 10, 2017
Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers
Formats: Hardcover, paperback, eBook
Find it: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, Goodreads
A teenage assassin kills with a single kiss until she is ordered to kill the one boy she loves. This commercial YA fantasy is romantic and addictive like — a poison kiss — and will thrill fans of Sarah J. Maas and Victoria Aveyard.
Marinda has kissed dozens of boys. They all die afterward. It s a miserable life, but being a visha kanya a poison maiden is what she was created to do. Marinda serves the Raja by dispatching his enemies with only her lips as a weapon.
Until now, the men she was ordered to kiss have been strangers, enemies of the kingdom. Then she receives orders to kiss Deven, a boy she knows too well to be convinced he needs to die. She begins to question who she s really working for. And that is a thread that, once pulled, will unravel more than she can afford to lose.
This rich, surprising, and accessible debut is based in Indian folklore and delivers a story that will keep readers on the edge of their seats.
Breeana Shields graduated from Brigham Young University with a BA in English.
Her debut young adult fantasy, POISON’S KISS, will be released from Random House in 2017 with a sequel to follow in 2018.
When she’s not writing about herself in the third person, Breeana loves reading, traveling, and spending time with her husband, her three children and an extremely spoiled miniature poodle.
It was just one sentence in an eighteen-hour course, but I couldn’t stop thinking about it. What a terrible choice to make for a child—sentencing her to a life that she’s powerless to leave. Isolating her forever from true human connection. I wondered what would happen to a girl who was turned into an assassin, but wasn’t cut out to be a killer. How would that life affect her? How would it break her?
Once I realized that the story wouldn’t leave me alone until I wrote it, I started researching the legends of the visha kanya, as well as mithridatism, which is the process of slowly becoming immune to a poison by ingesting it in ever increasing doses.
I knew I wanted to set Poison’s Kiss in a fantastical world, but it was important to me that it be a world that was based on the culture where the legend was born. India is extremely culturally diverse, so I pulled from different regions and languages as I built Sundari. I also read dozens of Indian folktales, and bits of those legends also made their way into the book, as well as many elements that were purely my own creation.
My goal in Poison’s Kiss was to create a unique world with its own history and culture, while still paying homage to the origins of the visha kanya myth. I hope readers enjoy it as much as I loved writing it.